We all want to get as fluent as possible as quickly as possible. One of the most underrated ways of doing this is through writing. Writing has so many advantages to it, that I’m surprised more people don’t use it more often.
One of the things that helps us become more fluent is making connections between the vocabulary our brains have in memory and our productive language areas. Both speaking and writing use these productive areas and doing one can strengthen the other. When you form a written sentence, it will help to build your spoken fluency as well because your brain will form stronger links between words. This will help you be able to recall words more quickly when forming new sentences, even when speaking. Writing helps transform the grammar rules you learn into grammatical sentences. It is the bridge between learning the rules of the language and making them automatic. That, in turn, will help you when it comes to speaking correctly.
Hand writing causes thinking – the repetition of writing your goal everyday will increase your awareness. The true purpose of a goal is to help you grow.Bob Proctor
Handwriting or printing has been shown to be much more beneficial for remembering things, too. While writing on the computer might be more efficient, writing by hand will help with securing the letters, words, and sentences even better in your memory.
Writing has the added advantage of giving you time to think about what you want to say. It’s sort of like speaking in slow motion!
Writing also ends up as a product. Something you can give to someone else to correct and give you feedback so you can improve. A record of where you are at and where you have come from in your language learning journey.
Here are some tips to help you get started writing:
- Write about something that interests you and that you want to write about;
- Write on a regular basis. It doesn’t have to be a huge work of literature, but a letter, or a blog post, or just a journal entry will get you going. It’s also a great way to keep track of how far you’ve come in your language learning journey;
- Write about normal daily goals, not necessarily just language learning goals either. Read the goals a couple of times throughout the day;
- Write a short summary of your daily events. You can make a chronological list, talk about a few events and how you felt about them, or even take one important event and expand on it;
- Make your shopping lists in your new language;
- Write down your “to-do” lists and reminders in your target language;
- Write down your dreams, summarize an article, or write a review of a movie you just saw.
The most important thing though is to try to do this every day. Your brain learns best when it is given small chunks of learning on a regular basis and is allowed to rehearse and repeat them. Every little bit you write helps, and adds up in the long run.